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Sevoflurane induces lung cancer cell apoptosis via inhibition of the expression of miRNA155 gene

Huaizhao Wang
Bin Wang
Jingyan Jing
Na Li


Purpose: To determine the apoptotic effect of sevoflurane on lung cancer cells, and the underlying mechanism of action.
Methods: Lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells were cultured for 24 h and divided into control group, 1% sevoflurane group and 3% sevoflurane group. The two levels of sevoflurane were provided through a gas monitor connected to each of the sevoflurane groups. The control group was not treated. Flow cytometry was used to analyze A549 cell apoptosis, while qRT-PCR was used for assay of the levels of miRNA155 in A549 cells. The protein expression of Bcl-2 was determined with immunoblotting. The percentage of apoptosis and levels of miRNA155 and Bcl-2 in the two cell lines were compared.
Results: Significant differences in miRNA146a level were seen between the 3 % sevoflurane and control groups at 3 h. There was higher apoptosis in the 3 % sevoflurane group, relative to control, but miRNA155 levels in the 3 % sevoflurane group were generally less than that of the control (p < 0.05). There was lower Bcl-2 content in the 3 % sevoflurane group than in control group (p < 0.05).
Conclusion: Sevoflurane exerts strong apoptotic and anti-proliferative effects on lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells via a mechanism which may be related to the downregulation of miRNA155, thereby inhibiting the expression of anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2. This provides a new direction for research on anti-lung adenocarcinoma drugs.

Keywords: Sevoflurane, Lung cancer cells, Apoptosis, Inhibition, miRNA155, Expression, Induction